Tents, Canopies, and Outdoor Events

The state of Ohio requires a permit for all tents and membrane structures (air inflated or frame covered structure) over 200 square feet, and canopies (open sides at least 75%) over 400 square feet.


  1. Tents used exclusively for recreational camping purposes.
  2. Canopies open on all sides which comply with all of the following:
    2.1. Individual canopies having a maximum size of 700 square feet (~ 26' by 26')(65m square).
    2.2. The aggregate area of multiple canopies placed side by side with a minimum clearance of less than 12 feet (3658mm), not exceeding 700 square feet (65m squared).
    2.3. A minimum clearance of 12 feet (3658 mm) to all structures and other tents.

Tent & Canopy Use Information Resources

These permits are not processed by Shawnee State University Risk Management, but by the Ohio Department of Commerce, Code Enforcement. Tents are NOT INSPECTED on weekends or holidays, except for football related events. Please allow at least 1 week for processing. Send permits to:

The Ohio Department of Commerce
Division of State Fire Marshal
8895 East Main Street
Reynoldsburg, OH 43068
(614) 752-8200
Fax: (614) 728-5168